Frankfurt LIVE: Opel Monza concept

The concept is powered by a CNG-burning evolution of the Volt\'s drivetrain.

General Motors' Opel division has pulled the sheet on its Monza concept at the Frankfurt Motor Show. The concept revives a storied nameplate used on a series of sports coupes from 1977 to 1986.

Like its predecessors, the Monza takes the form of a sleek, fastback-like coupe, but it breaks with the past with massive roof-hinged doors designed to provide unobstructed access to both rows of seats. Visually, the Monza is characterized by a sculpted body, thin trim pieces that create an elegant silhouette and a generally futuristic appearance.

The Monza's interior uses state-of-the-art LED projection technology for the instrument cluster and the touch screen-based infotainment system, a nod to the original Monza that pioneered digital dashboard technology over thirty years ago. Other highlights found in the cockpit include a highly-stylized dashboard, floor-mounted pedals and wood trim on the dash, the center console and the door panels.

Stretching 184 inches long, the Monza uses an evolution of the plug-in hybrid drivetrain that powers the Chevrolet Volt and the Opel Ampera. In order to lower CO2 emissions, the range extender is a natural gas-burning variant of the brand new 1.0-liter three-cylinder engine that will debut under the hood of the Adam city car over the next couple of months. Details about the car's electric motor and battery pack were not provided.

While the Monza hints at the design direction Opel / Vauxhall will take over the following decade, it will likely not be given the green light for production in the near future. However, the LED dashboard technology will be applied to upcoming Opel products and the plug-in hybrid drivetrain hints at what could lurk under the hood of the next-generation Chevrolet Volt when it arrives as either a 2015 or a 2016 model.

Read more!